London Has Fallen | Chicago Reader

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Rated R · 100 minutes · 2016

Action, Drama, Thriller
This sequel to the action blockbuster Olympus Has Fallen (2013) is even more brutally violent and jingoistic than its predecessor. Most of the principal cast are back, including Aaron Eckhart as the U.S. president and Gerard Butler as a terrorist-leveling secret service agent, yet the earlier movie's premise of a North Korean-led attack on the White House has been topped with an even more crass, paranoia-feeding scenario: an ISIS-like group targets world leaders gathered to attend a funeral in downtown London. This deserves some credit for making the terrorists' motive clear—"You murder our families from the sky," says one, in reference to U.S. drone strikes—but the American characters are quick to excuse the killing of innocent civilians as "unintentional" (before hitting them again). Butler is in his action-hero element, and Eckhart nails his comic-relief moments ("I haven't driven a car in six years!"), but their mildly diverting performances aren't enough to dislodge the film's troubling pro-engagement message. Babak Najafi directed; with Morgan Freeman, Angela Bassett, and Radha Mitchell.
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Director: Babak Najafi
Producer: Gerard Butler, Alan Siegel, Mark Gill, John Thompson, Matt O'Toole and Les Weldon
Cast: Gerard Butler, Aaron Eckhart, Morgan Freeman, Alon Aboutboul, Angela Bassett, Robert Forster, Jackie Haley, Melissa Leo, Radha Mitchell, Sean O'Bryan, Waleed Zuaiter and Charlotte Riley

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